‘I don’t have money, will fight elections on your money’, Kejriwal in Chattisgarh

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supremo Arvind Kejriwal has sounded the election bugle in Chhattisgarh by claiming how the party has no money left, and hence the election will be fought on the money of people. Saying that people have to fight elections since he himself is a common man, the funding should come from people themselves and not corporates. He further stated that funding received for fighting elections from corporates has to be returned, but when they fight on their own money, they get better schools and employment.

Speaking of Delhi school, Kejriwal claimed that 3 years back, Delhi government schools were in worse shape than in Chhattisgarh, but now even rich people send their children to government schools.

AAP rebel leader Kapil Mishra has accused Kejriwal of using these rallies to collect money, in lieu of tickets to contest the election. He accused Kejriwal of not conducting a rally as run up to the actual election after tickets have been sold for money.

Last year in December, Kejriwal had announced AAP will contest on all 60 seats in Nagaland, with focus on education and health sectors. However, eventually, AAP contested from 6 seats in Meghalaya and 3 in Nagaland, losing deposits in 8 out of those 9 seats.

Rahul Gandhi inadvertently exposes what The Wire’s plan was all along

'The Wire' Rahul Gandhi

On 9th of March 2018, OpIndia published an article that busted an impending hitjob on Arun Jaitley and his daughter’s law firm by the leftist propaganda website, ‘The Wire’. OpIndia had received information that there was a concerted information to somehow link Arun Jaitley to Mehul Choksi, the tainted businessman, whose scam had invariable landed at the Congress party’s and P Chidambaram’s doorstep.

We also received information that the law firm, that was engaged by the tainted businessman in December 2017, terminated its contract and returned the retainership it within a month, before providing any sort of legal assistance to Geetanjali Gems.

In response to our pre-emptive article, ‘The Wire’ had cried foul over their hit-job being debunked before it could even be published. They came up with a shoddy explanation saying that once they received the response from the law firm, they decided to not run the story because “initial conclusion was that there wasn’t much of a story after all.

Surprisingly, when ‘The Wire’ had sent their questionnaire to the law firm, they had categorically mentioned that their story was complete and they wanted to run it ideally with the firm’s response. How then did they decide “there was not much of a story after all” is a little sketchy, but we digress.

In the article that we published on the 9th of March 2018, we had made this observation :

It comes at a time when former Finance Minister Chidambaram is in the dock for the INX media case. Plus, Chidambaram is also in the gaze for signing a last minute order which primarily benefited Choksi’s and Nirav Mehta’s firms. A report which links Choksi to Jaitley then would make life much easier for Chidambaram.

So for some reason, ‘The Wire’ has decided not to cover a story on why Chidambaram, on the day 2014 Lok Sabha results were known, okayed a schemed that benefitted 13 private firms including that of Mehul Choksi and later the then RBI governor sanctioned that diluted 20:80 Gold Scheme five days before Modi took oath as the new Prime Minister. This glaring connection between Chidambaram, Raghuram Rajan and the Nirav Modi – Mehul Choksi scam has escaped the brave journalists at ‘The Wire’ completely.

Unsurprisingly, it may seem like our observation might be coming true after all.

Today, Rahul Gandhi in another epic self-goal plugged ‘The Wire’s’ article that claimed “there wasn’t much of a story after all” in a bid to indict Arun Jaitley and his daughter’s firm in the PNB scam.

The screenshot of Rahul’s tweet has been attached before because the Congress party and Rahul Gandhi have developed a habit of making such embarrassing gaffes and then deleting their tweets.

To summarise, Rahul Gandhi tweeted that the Finance Minister’s silence over the PNB scam was to protect his daughter’s firm that got a large retainership just a month before the scam broke out. He plugged an article that conceded “there wasn’t much of a story” to publish after finding out the law firm had returned the retainership once the scam broke and had not represented Mehul Choksi at all. He plugged the article that basically conceded that the OpIndia story was indeed correct and that Arun Jaitley, his daughter or their law firm cannot be connected to this scam which is why they dropped this story.

While all of Rahul’s idiotic gaffes and lies are laughable, and one might feel compelled to laugh this one off too, there is a larger question here.

Rahul Gandhi plugged an article from a sympathetic portal, distancing Arun Jaitley from the scam, as an indictment of his involvement. That makes me believe that Rahul Gandhi or the Einstien that runs his Social Media account did not even read the article they were about to plug.

Now, it is said that what can be attributed to stupidity should never be attributed to malice, but, in this case, while the stupidity is a foregone conclusion, the malice must also be examined.

The only reason an official handle would plug an article without even reading its contents can be that the handler thought they knew what the contents of the article from a sympathetic website would have. If we were to make an educated guess, should we assume that Rahul Gandhi and the Congress party knew that ‘The Wire’ was planning a hit-job to link Arun Jaitley to the tainted businessman? Which in turn would mean, that the Congress perhaps wasn’t aware that their latest hit-job had been preemptively foiled?

We had pointed out how there seems to be a concerted effort by ‘The Wire’ to link elements who are perceived close to the Prime Minister with the tainted businessman perhaps to shift focus away from the fact that P Chidambaram has found himself smack in the middle of this financial scam by Mehul Choksi and Nirav Modi?

Can we conclude that perhaps this is the reason why ‘The Wire’ hasn’t written a single article about P Chidambaram sanctioning the diluted 20:80 scheme on the day Congress lost 2014 elections, that basically facilitated the scam perpetrated by the duo? It almost seems like some PR professionals have been hired to try and link any official to the Nirav Modi – Mehul Choksi scam in order to shift the focus from Congress.

 

On a lighter note, this seems like Rahul Gandhi ended up tweeting the same text that he was supposed to tweet when hitjob by ‘The Wire’ is published. We should now know who in ‘The Wire’ has been leaking editorial plans to Rahul Gandhi. Or is Rahul Gandhi a central part of the decision making process?

‘Activist’ associated with Amnesty International India calls for violence against Brahmins

A “Human Rights activist” associated with Amnesty International India as per his Twitter bio, has advocated violence against Brahmins in a tweet:

Amnesty International, ironically, claims to work for lessening violence and granting dignity to common people around the world. However, in India, it is currently headed by controversial writer Aakar Patel, who himself is known for making bigoted casteist remarks. Perhaps this has emboldened anti-Brahmin and anti-Hindu elements, who often masquerade as activists and journalists.

Some of the replies to the tweet by this Amnesty ‘activist’ exposed similar mindsets in similar professions. One such reply, by a person claiming to be ‘independent journalist’, is particularly revealing. He compares attacking Brahmins for their sacred thread with burning the Confederate flag. He seems to be under the impression that Brahmins perpetuate caste violence by merely existing and wearing the Yajnopaveetam/janeu.

anti-brahmin hatred
Bigotry that passes for journalism in India

If one accepts logic of such activists and journalists, attacking people wearing Muslim skullcap should be justified as that religious symbol represents Islamist ideology. How is this any different from a Nazi mindset?

Naturally, people were not pleased with the call for violence against common people merely for their religious identity. Some criticized Amnesty International and called for the self proclaimed Human Rights organization to act against their associate openly encouraging violence against Brahmins.

Others urged the Police to take action against Karthik Navayan for inciting communal violence.

It remains to be seen whether any concrete action will be taken against the offender by Amnesty International or the Police. Thus far, there is no indication that any action has been taken or could be taken.

The controversial tweets can be found archived here in case they are deleted in the future. However, given the bigotry that in ingrained in such characters, it can be safely assumed that the ‘activist’ will brazen it out and wish for more violence against Brahmins.

When ABP news could have avoided embarrassment by reading its own newspaper

When ABP news could have avoided embarrassment by reading its own newspaper
ABP News logo

Septic tanks have become the new thing in the former communist bastion of Tripura, after Sunil Deodhar, the BJP’s state in-charge, asked new Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb to get all the septic tanks in the ministers’ quarters cleaned.

The reason given for the same was that, in January 2005, a woman’s skeleton was found in the septic tank of then CM Manik Sarkar’s quarter. He also claimed that the case had been suppressed. As per media reports from that time, the claim appears to be true.

Media reports from 2005 indicate that skeletal remains including the skull and nine bones of the shin, forearms and ribs were found in a tank connected to a toilet close to the house meant for security personnel and other members of the then Chief Minister’s staff, inside the CM’s official residence. The discovery was made when the tank was being cleaned by workers of the Agartala Municipal Council.

ABP News though had a totally different approach to the whole saga, as was caught by OpIndia columnist Sujoy Ghosh.

While running a report on the matter, the news anchor asked for a sound-bite from their correspondent. The correspondent though took a strange line, as seen in the video below:

The correspondent is heard as claiming that Deodhar has levelled very serious allegations, though as per him, the truth regarding the matter could only be ascertained post a probe. He then took a different trajectory by claiming that BJP leaders have been making strange claims in the past few days regarding the “statue controversy” which weren’t based on facts. He thus again reiterated that one should wait for a probe in this matter before drawing conclusions due to Manik Sarkar’s clean image.

This narrative though was odd on two accounts.

  1. It was strange to note that, ABP news was referring to Deodhar’s statement as a mere allegation, considering a popular newspaper named “The Telegraph”, which currently is part of the ABP group, had carried a story in January 2005, titled, “Woman’s skeleton in CM’s house”. Here the newspaper factually reported the incident, without hinting that it was based on any sort of “allegations”.
  2. Secondly, as per the same report, an under pressure Manik Sarkar had indeed constituted a CID probe in this matter after consulting with the left front and police officials. Hence ABP news’ assertion that one should wait for a probe doesn’t make much sense as, going by their group’s newspaper a probe was ordered by the none other than former CM Manik Sarkar.

Interestingly, as per latest reports, since Deodhar’s tweet, the Director-General of Police Akhil Kumar Shukla is reported to have said that they would now try to “ascertain” the progress CID made in its investigation. The report claimed that CID had failed to make much headway regarding the probe.

Forensic tests conducted had concluded that the skeleton was of a girl aged between 13 and 17 years. A possible sketch of the girl was also made and released in the media, but it elicited no response. Manik Sarkar in 2010 had defended himself in this matter, by alleging that the skeleton was dumped in the septic tank for no reason.

Considering the amount of mystery and uncertainty involved in this matter, it remains to be seen how seriously the police pursues the matter now, with there being no CPM government in the state anymore.

However, it is clear that the incident is not any wild allegation by a BJP leader as the ABP correspondent tried to suggest. Least he could have done is to read a newspaper of his own group.

Karnataka IPS Association expresses concern over declining law and order in a scathing letter

Karnataka Chief Minister

The Karnataka IPS Officers’ Association has written a concerned letter on the law and order situation in the state to the Chief Secretary of the state. In the letter dated 8th March 2018, Dr Rajvir Pratap Sharma, ADGP and President of the IPS association has brought out grave concerns and has questioned the integrity of the system and current scenarios. Addressed to Ms K Ratnaprabha, the chief secretary in the Karnataka government, the letter expresses deep concern and calls for urgent action.

The letter begins with the recent attack on the Lokayukta in his office premises and goes on to list out several other such attacks on serving officers in the state, including female IPS officers. Dr Sharma also lists several incidents where citizens were attacked and government properties were vandalised but there was conspicuous lethargy shown by the police to take appropriate action. He also recalls that in instances like riots over Cauvery water and farmer agitations in the city of Bangalore, the police and the state machinery should have handled the situation in a better way.

The letter further adds that normally the government offices were considered safe places by the people. But unchecked hooliganism has reached to such a point that even senior public servants themselves are not safe. Dr Sharma asserts that the Indian Police Service in Karnataka is merely a pale shadow of its past and it no longer commands the same stature. He expresses concern over the tenure of police officers being reduced to 1 year contrary to the police reforms order issued by the Supreme Court in the PIL of Prakash Singh. The letter states that Indian Police Officers cannot play their leadership roles if they are continuously being punished for discharging their duties.

The letter also alleges that in several cases, investigations have been hijacked at the political behest and this has resulted in criminals losing the fear for police. Dr Sharma insists that he can give specifics of the cases upon meeting. He adds that the specialised agencies under the police have also become redundant due to political interferences.

The letter draws attention to the fact that the Bangalore city has seen six different police commissioners in the past 4.5 years and due to frequent transfers of certain police officers, the continuity, command formation and intrinsic confidence of the IPS officers is at its lowest level. It asserts that attacks on the Lokayukta himself show that the officers are merely fulfilling their constitutional obligations to political powers and ignoring their obligations to the service of the people. Dr Sharma calls the current course of declining sense of responsibility towards the common man by the police officers is a dangerous precedent. The letter calls for urgent course correction and insists the IPS association wants the officers to accept their flaws and return to the path of duty and requests the chief secretary to convene a meeting of all the IPS officers to discuss strategy for the immediate goal of fair elections and the long-term goal of maintaining strong professional values and ethics.

Dr Sharma states that the office bearers of the IPS association are ready to convene a large group of serving IPS officers for the meeting and they are willing to give specific details of the cases mentioned in the letter. He also adds that even retired IPS officers should be called to impart their views and values.

The ‘Kisan Long March’ seems to be far from a spontaneous, neutral farmer’s protest

A farmers’ march organised by the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) today reached Mumbai’s Azad Maidan from Nashik, demanding a complete loan waiver, among other demands. AIKS is the peasant’s arm of the Communist Party of India – Marxist (CPIM) led by Sitaram Yechury.

Later in the day, the protestors plan to stage a protest outside Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. While our heart goes out to the farmers and their plight, the movement of farmers now seems to have been hijacked by political parties to score their own brownie points as a run-up to the upcoming general elections in 2019.

Shiv Sena, which recently broke its alliance with the BJP to go solo in 2019 elections, has already extended support to the farmers’ march against the BJP. Similarly, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) led by Raj Thackeray has also extended support to the farmers’ march.

Other than waiving off the loan, the farmers are demanding change in the government’s plan to link rivers in Thane, Nashik and Palghar, which is scheduled to go for by-poll elections sometime soon, to ensure that the tribal lands are not submerged. Meanwhile, up to February, Maharashtra government has approved more than 5.4 million farmer bank accounts and funds of Rs. 12,381 crores have been released to banks for more than 4.6 million of them.

While the issues are genuine and the government is working towards resolving them, many have wondered if there is an ulterior motive behind such protests.

The march even has tribals from the interiors of Maharashtra participating along with farmers of Vidarbha, Marathwada and Khandesh. A similar such rally was organised by CPIM back in May 2015, where the same Azad Maidan was decorated with red flags and photos of Karl Marx.

Many, including the Managing Editor of Mail Today, an English Daily, have raised questions about the politicisation of the farmers’ rally and how it doesn’t seem spontaneous and neutral.

While the plight of farmers is indeed a matter of grave concern and the government must take steps to bring the agriculture and allied sector out of distress, the Kisan Long March, which has farmers waving red communists flags, seems to be far from a neutral, spontaneous rally.

After SC verdict in her favour, Hadiya meets chief of an Islamist hardline organisation

Hadiya met the chief of alleged Islamist organisation

The Supreme Court had recently upheld the marriage of Hadiya to Shafin Jahan which was earlier annulled in 2017 by the Kerala High Court. The SC held, however, that the NIA was free to probe the Love Jihad angle and take it to its logical conclusion. It said that marriage between two consenting adults cannot be annulled by the court.

While many chose to echo the “love wins” angle, disturbing details have now emerged about formerly Akhila Asokan and now Hadiya, meeting the chief of a suspected Islamist organisation PFI three days after the verdict.

PFI is allegedly involved in hypnotic counselling of Hindu girls in order to convert them in their religious centres as per NIA investigations. A religious facilitation centre managed by PFI called ‘Sathyasarini/Markaz Hidaya Da’wa Institute’ in Manjeri, Kerala is allegedly connected with 9 out of 11 cases of ‘Love-Jihad’ investigated by NIA. ‘Love Jihad’ is a term known in the mainstream media for the modus operandi of Islamists to lure Hindu women into marrying them, with the ulterior motive of converting their religion to Islam.

The institute is allegedly targeting the subconscious of the inmates to convert them. In addition to this, NIA has claimed that the organisation is also using allurement, confinement and coercion as part of their tactics. In response to these allegations, the public relations director of PFI told TOI that the NIA was wilfully maligning PFI. The Supreme Court had asked NIA to continue the probe but not to interfere in Hadiya’s marriage.

PFI is also known for chopping off a professor’s hand for allegedly insulting the Prophet in a question paper. 13 members of the organisation were found guilty by an NIA court.

The minister of state for home affairs Kiren Rijiju had also tweeted that some elements in Kerala government had asked for a ban of PFI.

A report of a detailed presentation on PFI given by Kerala Police Chief at the DGP meet in Tekanpur, Madhya Pradesh has also raised eyebrows on the activities of this organisation. BJP in Karnataka and Kerala have called for the ban of PFI for their alleged involvement in communal incidents and targeted political murders. Yet no action has been taken on the organisation so far.

While many have disputed the ulterior religious motive and have tried to discredit the “love jihad” phenomenon, Hadiya’s recent meeting with extremists points to a very different and dangerous direction.

How the most intolerant wins – Nassim Taleb’s latest book has an important lesson for India

Nassim Nicholas Taleb's latest book has an important lesson for India

Nassim Nicholas Taleb has been one of the most influential writers of our times. He is a scholar, statistician, former trader, and an alumnus of Wharton Business School. His books ‘Black Swan’, ‘Fooled by Randomness’, ‘Antifragile‘ have addressed fundamental issues plaguing the world.

Taleb takes on self-proclaimed experts and the ‘intellectual-yet-idiots’ in academia, public policy, economics and media in his books and articles. His latest book ‘Skin In The Game‘ is yet another addition to his collection of books which reveal some interesting insights into the way the world functions.

The author, in his preface, tells us what his latest book is about. Skin In The Game is about four major topics in one, he says. They are:

  • Uncertainty and reliability of knowledge (bullshit detection in simpler words)
  • Symmetry in human affairs (fairness, justice, responsibility, reciprocity)
  • Information sharing in transactions
  • Rationality in complex systems and in the real world

These four cannot be separated when one has his/her skin in the game as per Taleb. The central concept of the book is what Taleb calls ‘skin in the game’ which coincides with the name of the book. The author defines the concept as below :

Skin in the game definition of a commons: a space in which you are treated by others the way you treat them, where everyone exercises the silver rule (Do not do to others what you would not like them to do to you)”

The author has explained the same concept simpler words as below:

“Beware of the person who gives advice, telling you that a certain action on your part is “good for you” while it is also good for him, while the harm to you doesn’t directly affect him.”

‘What is the utility of this concept?’, one may ask. The world is filled with intellectuals and gurus who will tell you what is good for a country or society. The recent incident of so-called human rights activists criticising India for not accepting Rohingya refugees is one of the best examples. These activists will continue to live happily in their own countries while lecturing down to others who will face problems in real time. The ‘idea of India’ brigade in our own country is also filled with such individuals. They preach secularism and vehemently defend conversions, inter-faith marriages even though they are aware that this is a one-way road.

Apart from the introduction, the book has six main parts which largely deal with topics of uncertainty, the dominance of a stubborn minority, freedom, scientism, fake news and religion.

Taleb’s writing is not rigidly compartmentalised. He is not a difficult writer to understand, though he often invokes math, philosophy and Greek mythology in his writing. The book is an eye-opener on almost all topics it deals with and is therefore worth a read.

However, the most relevant concept in the book for an Indian audience is dealt with hereafter.

The Most Intolerant Wins

However, the most important lesson from this book for a reader in the Indian scenario would be his second chapter ‘The Most Intolerant Wins: The Dominance of the Stubborn Minority’. In this chapter, he talks about how a minute community of Jews/Muslims in the USA is able to influence the availability (Kosher/Halal meat) in entire America. He talks of ‘one-way street of religions’ and explains how the Muslim majority was achieved in a largely Christian West Asia and Egypt. Taleb lists two asymmetric rules that enabled this to happen:

“First, under Islamic law, if a non-Muslim man marries a Muslim woman, he needs to convert to Islam- and if either parent of a child happens to be Muslim, the child will be Muslim*. Second, becoming Muslim is irreversible, as apostasy is the heaviest crime under the religion, sanctioned by the death penalty.

*There are some minor variations across regions and Islamic sects. The original rule is that if a Muslim woman marries a non-Muslim man, he needs to convert. But practice, in many countries, both need to do so.”

The author says that under these two asymmetric rules a small minority of Muslims can reduce an existing majority into a minority over a period of time. All one needs is a small rate of inter-faith marriages, he says.

This reminded me of the latest verdict by the Supreme Court in the Hadiya case. Several studies on the demographic change in Kerala confirm Taleb’s analysis. The same phenomenon is happening at a slower pace in entire India as well. One might wonder as to what is the solution for Hindus to resist such a possibility. Taleb has an answer, albeit in another unrelated part of the same chapter. He says:

“Yes, an intolerant minority can control and destroy democracy. Actually, it will destroy our world. So, we need to be more intolerant with some intolerant minorities. Simply they violate the silver rule (Do not do to others what you would not like them to do to you). It is not permissible to use ‘American values’ or ‘Western values’ in treating intolerant Salafism (which denies other people’s right to have their own religion). The west is currently in the process of committing suicide.”

This fact is relevant to India as much as it is to the West. Therefore, Hinduism and Hindus must drop a significant part of their pride in being ‘tolerant’ all the time and adopt some ‘intolerance’ to merely survive. For that, we have to first stop being politically correct in our discourse.

State govt employees in Tripura could get higher salaries as new CM takes charge

Biplab Kumar Deb takes over as Tripura CM

BJP leader Biplab Kumar Deb has started off in his new role as Chief Minister of Tripura. In his first cabinet meeting as the CM, he has taken three key decisions.

The first is to examine whether a CBI probe into the death of two journalists, Sudip Bhowmik and Shantanu Bhowmik can be ordered. Currently, the case is being investigated by a Tripura police SIT (special investigation team). Sudip was killed by a policeman in November last year while Shantanu was killed in September last year while covering a fight involving CPM workers.

The second is to set up a committee to explore the implementation of seventh pay commission. This move could benefit 2.45 lakh employees of the government. Currently, the employees are not getting salaries as per recommendations of 7th pay commission.

The third decision is to rename the Agartala airport after its the last reigning king of Tripura. Earlier it was known as Agartala airport. Hereafter it will be called as the Maharaj Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya Airport.

The Maharaja is known to be a progressive ruler and the architect of modern Tripura. The king is responsible for construction of the airport, and land reforms in the state during his reign before Tripura joined the Indian union. The current heir of the Manikya dynasty is interestingly working president of Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee.

Biplab Kumar Deb has reaffirmed that his key focus will be good governance, health and education. He has also told that he would take advise from former Chief Minister and learn from his experience:

Lalu’s son Tej Pratap Yadav wants to build a ‘secular temple’ at Ayodhya

Tej Pratap Yadav has remained in news for either his colourful attires or his strange remarks
Representational image

The Ram Temple issue which was so far considered ‘untouchable’ by ‘secular’ parties has now found a new votary. It is none other than Tej Pratap Yadav, son of Lalu Prasad Yadav and a senior leader of RJD. He has claimed that RJD would build Ram Temple while speaking at wrestling event in Biharsharief earlier in the week.

Translation of Tej Pratap’s words are below :

Hindu, Muslim, Christian, extremely backward, poor, dalit , everyone would keep a brick over there. We will work on building a Ram Mandir. The day on which Ram Temple is built, RSS and BJP would be finished on that day. They will not have any issue on that day. They will bang a plate with a spoon after that. 

The video of his remark is below :

Later, when media highlighted his words, he clarified that he wanted to build a ‘secular temple’ where all faiths could pray.

Tej Pratap Yadav’s clarification

The translation of his clarification is as below :

In the Biharsharief dangal program , I told that BJP guys talk about building a Ram Temple but do not tell the date of its construction. We will build such a temple where Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian and all people can worship. It will be a temple of humanity. BJP’s temple agenda will end when that happens. 

The RJD leader’s clarification suggests that he wants to eat the cake and have it too. On one hand he wants to destroy the BJP after building Ram Temple in future. But in the present tense, he wants to ensure that non-Hindus don’t vote against his party for taking such a stance by introducing the concept of ‘temple of humanity’.

32 crore Aadhaar numbers connected to voter IDs, says Chief Election Commissioner

Chinese citizen arrested in West Bengal after being found possessing an Aadhaar card
Chinese with fake Aadhaar card

The Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) OP Rawat revealed that 32 crore Aadhaar numbers have been connected to voter IDs in the country. He informed that EC would ensure that the same would be done to rest of the 54.5 crore voter IDs after Supreme court gave it verdict in an ongoing case. The 32 crore voter IDs were seeded in a matter of 3 months according to the CEC.

The CEC was speaking at the 14th national conference organised by Association for Democratic Rights (ADR) in Bengaluru.

The ongoing efforts were stalled by a petition filed by Mathew Thomas questioning the validity of Aadhaar act. A total of 22 cases have been referred to the Supreme Court regarding Aadhar. The petitioner has alleged that the Aadhar would violate the privacy of the citizens.

This will be examined in depth by the Supreme Court after it had ruled that privacy is a fundamental right under the constitution in August 2017. The central government is also working on a data protection law to protect the citizens.

Abusive troll and leftist website’s strong claims about RSS-BJP’s ‘tussle’ get proven wrong

Abusive troll and leftist website's strong claims about RSS-BJP's 'tussle' get proven wrong
Journalist Swati Chaturvedi (left) Scroll.in logo (right)

Abusive troll Swati Chaturvedi who also claims to be a journalist wrote an article on NDTV in February, which claimed that personnel changes could be made within the RSS to help PM Modi. As per the article, a huge organisational shakeup could happen in the RSS by March end, which was critical for the Lok Sabha polls.

One of the claims regarding these “changes” was that with RSS’ second in command Suresh Joshi’s term coming to end in March, he was likely to be replaced by Dattatreya Hosabale who is supposed to be close to PM Modi.

In the resultant analysis, the abusive troll claimed that the implications of this change would be “huge” for RSS and the BJP. One such claim made was that RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and Suresh Joshi share the view that RSS cannot play second fiddle to the BJP, but if Hosabale became the second in command then the balance of power will skew towards PM Modi. The author even alleged that Hosabale has risen meteorically through the ranks after Modi became PM.

The article later quoted an anonymous RSS source to claim that if the power shift happened then Modi would become the most powerful functionary in the Sangh Parivar. This relationship between Modi and Hosabale as per the article was causing some “disquiet” between Nitin Gadkari and Rajnath Singh.

This claim that Hosabale might be replacing Joshi was also peddled by leftist website Scroll, which claimed that the possibility of Hosabale’s elevation as the Sarkaryavah (General Secretary), was causing disquiet within the RSS. It alleged that Modi was trying to elevate Hosabale to reduce RSS’s influence over the BJP. It also claimed that Hosabale’s ascension was on route to be thwarted, but BJP’s solid performance in the North East tilted the scales in Modi’s favour.

As seen above, both the articles insinuated that all was not well between BJP and the RSS, with both the organisations being involved in a power struggle. The key component used to peddle this narrative was the strong possibility of Dattatreya Hosabale becoming the RSS’ second in command.

Unfortunately for them, these claims though have failed to stand the test of time as it has now been reported that Suresh Joshi has been reelected as RSS’ General Secretary or “Sarkaryavah” by the Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha, which is the organisation’s highest decision-making body.

The announcement of the same was made by the RSS’ communications-in-charge Manmohan Vaidya at a press conference. Joshi would now continue to hold this post for three more years.

So, in short, whatever power shifts, power struggles and manoeuvres the Scroll and abusive troll’s article spoke about, seem to have now been postponed for at least three years. This raises the question as to how did they end up claiming whatever they claimed and whether there was any hidden agenda behind making allegations of disquiet between the RSS and the BJP?

‘The Wire’ cries foul after their hitjob on Jaitley was outed before it was published

Propaganda website The Wire

Leftist site ‘The Wire’, which is routinely caught on the wrong side of facts has a new grouse now: How did our story get leaked even before we published it.

To rewind, a few days back, OpIndia.com and another site Lopak.org had reported that The Wire was planning another hitjob against an NDA minister. A source had informed us that ‘The Wire’ was planning to target Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, by trying to establish a link between his daughter’s legal firm and scam ridden Mehul Choksi’s Geetanjali Gems Limited. We had detailed how the legal firm claimed that they had terminated a barely 1-month-old contract with the company. This story was published on 9th March.

Today, on 11th March, ‘The Wire’ has finally confirmed that we got it right. In a new post, ‘The Wire’ admitted that they were trying to establish the above link:

The Wire was indeed investigating the story and had done due diligence by sending a questionnaire to the law firm owned by Jaitley’s daughter and son-in-law, Jaiyesh Bakhshi.

‘The Wire’ then states that, on getting replies from the law firm, their “initial conclusion was that there wasn’t much of a story after all.“. This might seem discombobulating since we have now accessed documents which show that the journalist who was handling this matter, had gone on record to state the following (emphasis added):

I would like to add that our story is complete but we would ideally like to run it with your version. 

So, ‘The Wire’ needs to answer how was the “story complete” even without waiting for the response of the very person based on whom the story was being made? And did the response they received from the law firm make them suddenly believe that a “complete story” was “not a story after all”? Or was it the fact that we burst their bubble even before they blew it?

Next, ‘The Wire’ seems awfully bothered about how we got our information:

Either the intelligence agencies are monitoring the phones and emails of The Wire’s staff and/or of Bakhshi, and passed on details about the story to OPINDIA. Or the “source” is Bakhshi or an associate, or a person tasked by them.

The same question could be asked of ‘The Wire’ itself. Who tipped them off that Jaitley’s daughter’s firm was engaged by Geetanjali Gems? A commercial transaction which has not been disclosed in the public domain reached reporters of ‘The Wire’. Most definitely the law firm did not leak this news. So was it Mehul Choksi’s Geetanjali Gems? Are journalists of ‘The Wire’ asking Geetanjali Gems owners or employees about any links to any BJP leader hoping the hit the bullseye while shooting in the dark?

Or, as we had pointed out earlier, is there a larger figure running the scheme of things?

It comes at a time when former Finance Minister Chidambaram is in the dock for the INX media case. Plus, Chidambaram is also in the gaze for signing a last minute order which primarily benefited Choksi’s and Nirav Mehta’s firms. A report which links Choksi to Jaitley then would make life much easier for Chidambaram.

So for some reason, ‘The Wire’ has decided not to cover a story on why Chidambaram, on the day 2014 Lok Sabha results were known, okayed a schemed that benefitted 13 private firms including that of Mehul Choksi and later the then RBI governor sanctioned that diluted 20:80 Gold Scheme five days before Modi took oath as the new Prime Minister. This glaring connection between Chidambaram, Raghuram Rajan and the Nirav Modi – Mehul Choksi scam has escaped the brave journalists at ‘The Wire’ completely.

In the past week, there have been at least 2 instances of ‘The Wire’ trying to link Finance Ministry related persons, to either Nirav Modi or Mehul Choksi. Both stories have failed. When attempts were being made to tie the Finance Secretary Adhia to Nirav Modi, and the link failed, the story was spun around to “Why did Adhia accept gold biscuits from an anonymous person”. When the “complete story” of Jaitley with Choksi was outed by us even before ‘The Wire’ published it, a new stand was taken that “it was not a story after all”.

The question, therefore, should not be: Who is the source for which story. The question should be: Why is ‘The Wire’ moving mountains to somehow try and find a link between Nirav Modi or Mehul Choksi, with some NDA minister or functionary, especially from the Finance Ministry? What is the motive? And can this motive which clearly seems ulterior, be dolled up as “investigative journalism” by elements who wouldn’t know the truth if it hit them in their face?

CPM, accused of pre-poll violence in Tripura, withdraws candidate alleging post-poll violence

CPM itself accused of pre-poll violence in Tripura withdraws candidate alleging post-poll violence
CPM flags

The CPM on Saturday decided to withdraw from the Charilam seat in Tripura, the polling of which was postponed due to the death of CPM candidate Ramendra Narayan Debbarma. Alternatively, polling will be held on 12th March. Earlier the party had fielded an alternate candidate in the form of Palash Debbarma.

Since then, the party has had a change of heart to not contest from the seat alleging post-poll violence in the constituency. The CPM’s state secretary Bijan Dhar has blamed the ruling BJP and Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) for this violence. As per him, the CPM candidate was forced to stay out of the constituency, despite being its resident. Dhar thus claimed that they had sought for further postponement of the polls, which wasn’t granted. Thus they decided to unanimously withdraw from the polls.

BJP’s Sunil Deodhar though has termed the allegations as baseless.

Such allegations by the CPM might be taken with a pinch of salt by the people, considering the communist party itself has been accused widespread violence prior to the polls.

We had reported how barely week ahead of the polls, the body of a BJP booth president was recovered from Barjala region of the state. Madhu Deb the party’s booth president from the Ramnagar constituency, was abducted and remained untraceable for a couple of days. BJP had alleged that CPM cadre was behind this act.

As per BJP’s Sunil Deodhar, who has been made in-charge of the state, this was the 11th Tripura BJP activist, killed in the last 13 months, thereby insinuating the violent conditions under which the opposition parties operated.

Such allegations though weren’t unique for this election. As per a Swarajya article, the communist party is known to create a climate of terror and intimidation ahead of the polls. The CPM allegedly restrains opposition candidates from campaigning and issues threats to opposition workers and voters. It is also alleged that CPM workers and musclemen violently go around towns and villages ahead of polling day to create a climate of fear.

As is commonly known, “assuming power over the state isn’t the same as assuming power over the establishment”, some might find it difficult to believe to that the CPM has been so exponentially weakened and BJP similarly strengthened that, the red party is now being overpowered violently barely days after the latter has assumed power.

Congress fans scan Rahul Gandhi’s brain to interpret what he meant by ‘connecting MRI machines’

People are wondering about the contents of Rahul Gandhi's brain

In Singapore, Rahul Gandhi came up with the idea of connecting all MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) machines or scanners, and since then the internet is trying to decipher what exactly he meant and how is that going to help the humanity.

Rahul Gandhi had said that the entire healthcare sector on the planet would be transformed if all the MRIs were connected.

A comment that initially drew nothing but laughter has now been turned into something that is in fact intellectually valid and visionary in nature. Some dynasty fans went on to say that those mocking Rahul Gandhi were morons and had no legitimacy to speak on this topic:

While most of the commentators trying to rationalise what Rahul Gandhi said, had no domain knowledge themselves and were aligned to the Congress party or Congress-left ecosystem, some neutral observers too explained that some research in collating and understanding data of MRIs was underway. However, it was not clear if Rahul Gandhi is aware of these scientific developments:

So did Rahul Gandhi really suggest a scientifically or technologically critical and novel idea? It depends on the benefit of doubt you are willing to give Rahul Gandhi for his intelligence and knowledge.

However, an interesting information that has come out in this debate, is that a part of the wisdom — which depends upon how liberally and favourably you are willing to interpret Congress President’s statement — demonstrated by Rahul Gandhi was already executed by Narendra Modi more than ten years ago when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat.

The information came out when a doctor and a commentator-on-all-things got into a debate on Twitter over Rahul Gandhi’s statement, where the commentator-on-all-things was trying to mock Narendra Modi supporters. The doctor revealed that he had already participated in a pilot program on the digitisation of health records in Gujarat:

The document on Hospital Management Information Services [pdf] shows that these ideas had been pursued years before the dynastic scion came up with his brilliant idea. Such a system was pursued as early as 2006 in Gujarat. The first paragraph of the executive summary of this report says:

“The Hospital Management Information System has been envisaged to help health administrators in Gujarat to exercise an enhanced monitoring control over the functioning of government hospitals by using decision support indicators, to assist doctors and medical staff to improve health services with readily reference patient records and a work flow enabled less-paper process and to provide efficient and timely treatment to patients through automatic alerts during patient treatment cycle.”

So Rahul Gandhi might appear to have a point, but he never made that point. The theories put forward by Gandhi’s supporters and opportunistic fence-sitters are incoherent to say the least, especially when Rahul Gandhi did not explain about what his idea of connecting MRIs was. This appears to be a classic case of drawing a target after the arrow has landed on a spot.

Nitin Gadkari slams Rajdeep Sardesai at the India Today Conclave over ‘achche din’

At the Indian Today Conclave, Nitin Gadkari, the Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Water Resources sat down with Rajdeep Sardesai, notorious for his biased coverage of events, for a discussion on the politics of the country ahead of the 2019 general elections.

At one point during the chat, Rajdeep Sardesai asked Gadkari if the Prime Minister was willing to go to the people claiming ‘achche din’ had arrived during his campaign for the 2019 elections. And Gadkari, in his blistering form took Sardesai to the cleaners with his reply.

In his response to the question, the Minister began by clarifying that ‘Achche din’ never really comes if people choose to remain dissatisfied with their current state of affairs. However, he clarified that ‘Achche din’ mean ‘Roti, Kapra, Makaan’, that is, food, clothes and homes for everyone. He then went on to highlight the work being done by the government through the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana that seeks to provide homes to the economically disadvantaged sections of the country. He also mentioned the irrigation facilities provided to farmers during the tenure of this government.

Nitin Gadkari also mentioned 16 lakh crores of investment in the Sagar Mala project and the 4 lakh crore worth of investment in the modernization of ports across the country. He also said that special economic zones were being developed with lakhs of crores of investment which would provide employment opportunities to hundreds and thousands of people across the country.

Finally, he said that the only problem is the media has to go into great detail to comprehend how the promise of ‘achche din’ was being fulfilled by the NDA government.

Rafale Chief debunks the accusations of ‘overpriced Rafale deal’ hurled by the Congress party

Eric Trappier has debunked the accusations of Congress

The Congress Party has been using a document of the Rafale company to claim that India had paid for the aircraft in comparison to Egypt and Qatar.

These unfounded claims have been put to rest by Rafale Chief Eric Trappier in an interview to Times Now. While refusing to divulge the actual details which would result in the higher value of the entire deal, he said that the difference was due to higher capabilities and nature of the contract between India and France.

When asked for the reason for the higher price, he said, ‘you have to compare what can be compared‘. Mr Trappier said the price of the plane was same for all countries if the same contract were to be signed for all countries. ‘It is irrelevant to say that the price is different. The scope is different. We are not selling the same type of product around or same type of capabilities in here to other countries, so this is a matter of difference,’ he clarified.

He said that the number of years of support given to India is not the same as that offered to other countries. If that were taken into account, the price would turn out to be the same he told. The total support given to India has a broader scope as per Rafale chief.

The clarification offered by the Rafale chief clearly takes the wind out of the Congress sails as far as accusations of a ‘higher price’ being paid by the BJP led government for Rafale aircraft.

Meanwhile, the French president has made an interesting remark that he wouldn’t interfere if the government were to reveal some details to allay the concerns of the opposition regarding the Rafale deal. After the clarification offered by the Rafale chief, this demand may also lose its significance as the national interest would be jeopardized if the details were to be revealed.

Indian Railways to impart skill development by setting up vocational training centres on its unused land

Indian Railways to set up vocational training centres on its unused land to train children of its 3 lakh trackmen
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal

The Piyush Goyal-led Indian Railways has tied up with the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) to impart vocational training for the children of its 3 lakh employees who work as trackmen and gangmen. This skill development initiative has been approved by the Prime Minister’s office, following a presentation made by senior railway officials.

In order to facilitate the setting up of these NSDC centres, Indian Railways will allot plots on its land along railways stations. These centres would be located near Railway colonies so as to make it easier for the children to attend classes.

As per a railways official, they weren’t just looking at land and were even hunting for spare rooms which could be used by NSDC to run its centres. Railways have till now shortlisted 100 suitable locations for the skill development centres.

The main aim of the scheme is to impart skills to the children so that can build a career out of them. The final aim is to try and place the children in various companies with the help of this course.

In total, Indian Railways has about 47,300 hectares of unused land, though 90% of it runs parallel to its railway tracks. This renders a considerable amount of the unused land, incompatible for commercial purposes. A part of this unused land as per officials could be used for setting up the NSDC centres.

This proposal to impart skill development program using railways infrastructure had also been discussed in 2015. As per a “PIB” press release, the railways was to make its sparse infrastructure available for Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE). MSDE, in turn, would the use it to impart skill development programs for the unemployed youth, mainly in rural and remote areas.

It remains to be seen if the latest initiative of the Indian Railways is also extended to students beyond those whose parents are employed by it.

Karti Chidambaram files caveat before SC in anticipation that ED might move court to secure arrest

karti was in Tihar since March 12
karti chidambaram

Karti Chidambaram, the son of former Finance Minister P Chidambaram has filed a caveat in the Supreme Court to hear him before passing any order on the reprieve granted to him yesterday by the Delhi High Court. The Delhi High Court on Friday had passed an order which said that if he is granted bail by a trial court in the CBI case, the ED cannot arrest him till March 20, the date of his next hearing.

Karti has done it in anticipation that the ED might move to the SC against the order and try to arrest him before March 20. Karti’s lawyer Arun Natarajan in the INX Media case has stated that they have filed the caveat in the SC to intimate and hear them if the ED challenges the Delhi High Court order.

Karti’s CBI custody ended on March 9th. Yesterday, the Patiala House court had extended Karti’s CBI custody till March 12. The court had also allowed the CBI to bring Karti face to face with his arrested charted accountant Bhaskaran in the Tihar Jail. The same court will now hear his bail plea on March 15. The Delhi High Court provided Karti interim relief on an event of arrest by ED till March 20.

According to reports, Karti feared that the ED will immediately arrest him after that. He had moved to Delhi High Court after the SC directed him to withdraw his petition there and approach the Delhi HC for challenging the summons of ED.

Karti’s lawyer has also stated that the CBI wanted to do a polygraph test on Karti and they have given a written petition claiming that there can be no compulsion regarding the test.

Karti was arrested by the CBI on February 28 from the Chennai airport. His CA, Bhaskaran was arrested on February 16. Karti was arrested for his alleged involvement in the INX Media scam.

Author who questioned Rahul Gandhi in Singapore indicts Congress for ‘fake news’

Facebook suspends controversial data agency which was reportedly helping Congress win elections
Rahul Gandhi

The author who asked Rahul Gandhi a question at his interaction in Singapore, Prasenjit K Basu, has commented that the videos posted on @INCIndia and @OfficeOfRG were a classic case of fake news.

In his response to a question by CNN New 18 journalist, Mr Basu said that:

What happened was I asked a very simple and factual question. Rahul Gandhi was unable to answer it. He responded with a counter question, which was almost juvenile. He asked ‘What is your hypothesis?’ Well, the question was to him. I of course had a hypothesis. I asked why was the performance poor under his family’s leadership? He didn’t answer. All of this was edited out of the video which was posted on the @INCIndia and @OfficeOfRg twitter handle, which have been posting fake news videos.

Prasenjit Basu went on to say that Rahul Gandhi had failed to answer the question posed to him, even after being give three attempts. On the second attempt, Rahul was asked a follow-up question with additional details. The moderator had then provided him with a third chance, as per Mr. Basu. He went to say that the doctored videos were meant to mislead the public.

Mr Basu. while on this matter, went on to say that the per capita GDP growth in the period of 1947 to 1989 was lower than the world average, and it was a disgrace for a country which was one of the poorest on earth. When asked if he was bullying Rahul Gandhi, he denied the same. He claimed that he allowed Rahul to answer and the moderator had thanked him for asking a succinct and to the point question.

Here is the full video of the interaction between Rahul Gandhi and Prasenjit Basu:

The official of the Congress party hasn’t yet deleted the “doctored video”, where flashes and scene changes are placed strategically to save Rahul Gandhi the embarrassment of not being able to answer succinctly put questions.

This is the altered video:

While putting up this edited video, the the Congress Twitter handle hailed Rahul Gandhi for “gracefully handling detractors and calling their bluff”, without even acknowledging the nature of the video.

Of course, while the Congress party is justified to try its best to protect Rahul, surprisingly controversial journalist Sagarika Ghose also came to his defence by abusing Mr Basu.

This wasn’t the only embarrassment that Rahul Gandhi had to face in this interactive session held in Singapore. During the event, many gems emerged where Rahul Gandhi made ridiculous statements about how the Congress party used to measure the peace in Kashmir by the number of planes landing in the state and expressed his wish to connect all the MRI machines in the world.

Sagarika Ghose gets called out by the author she abused for asking tough questions to Rahul Gandhi

Sagarika Ghose and author she abused now involved in a brand new fight
Journalist Sagarika Ghose (left), Author Prasenjit Basu (right)

The story of controversial journalist Sagarika Ghose and Singapore based author Prasenjit Basu who posed a tough question to Rahul Gandhi during the latter’s visit to the county doesn’t seem to be ending.

We had reported yesterday how Ms Ghose had launched an abusive, elitist and anti-Hindu tirade against Mr Basu, for asking a question which stumped the Congress President.

The question posed pertained to asking Rahul why India’s per capita income grew slower as compared to the world when “his family” was in power. It was followed up by asking why did the per capita income see a much faster growth soon after Rahul’s family relinquished the Prime Ministerial position of the country. The Gandhi dynast failed to come up with a convincing answer and the Congress later put up a doctored video to mitigate the damage.

This “humiliation” had possibly caused a lot of grief who put out this tweet:

The hatred, contempt and elitism dripping from the tweet surprised many including Union Minister Babul Supriyo who expressed grief at Ms Ghose’s manner of expressing disagreement.

Prasenjit Basu the author, decided to respond to this tweet by revealing that he and Sagarika were students at the same college and had even acted in various plays together, including one which was directed by Sagarika’s father Bhaskar Ghose. He even claimed that they were close friends:

This “candid admission” though irked Ms Ghose who soon decided to refute his claims of being “close friends”, and co-actors in multiple plays:

Basu though wasn’t willing to take it lying down and proceeded to call out her “selective amnesia” by claiming that her father had directed the play Troilus and Cressida, where they had both acted. He then proceeded to mock her as a Congress stooge masquerading as a journalist:

Ms Ghose though hasn’t yet come back with a response to Basu’s latest allegations, which includes any sort of a denial of the same.

Aaj Tak managing editor rejects conspiracy theories about govt putting ‘pressure’ on media

Managing Editor of Aaj Tak
Supriya Prasad, Managing Editor, India Today news channels.

Supriya Prasad, the Managing Editor of the Aaj Tak and India Today news channels, has said that he never faced any kind of pressure from the government regarding news broadcasts or running ‘favourable news’.

Supriya Prasad was speaking at an event called ‘Media Mahakumbh’ organised at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC) in New Delhi, where he answered questions put by Abhishek Mehrotra of Samachar4Media.

“I have never seen political pressure. Sometimes we do get press releases on behalf of the government, there are requests to cover events but that’s it. It can be called ‘request’ not ‘pressure’. I hereby say that there is no pressure on media from the government,” Prasad was quoted as saying.

Prasad said that being involved with a trusted institution minimises the possibility of political pressure. On being asked again, possibly to clarify his stand, he expressed categorically that there was no pressure on the media from the government.

Prasad though added that certain journalists might get under pressure, but that was due to their own reasons. Speaking for the media house he works for, he added that Aaj Tak has never faced any pressure from the government with regard to any news broadcast.

Perhaps hinting at the reasons journalists might get under pressure of their own, Prasad stated that being unbiased is the basic principle of journalism and indulging in the politics of ruling or opposition party is not journalism. He disapproved of ‘agenda journalism’.

Supriya Prasad also disapproved of journalists being too aggressive on social media, especially with regards to their ideological or political preferences. He said that this had ‘harmed’ journalism.

“Be it myself or anyone else, we all vote for a political party and are inclined towards it but by declaring such things on social media, we gradually become a biased journalist,” he said.

Supriya however rejected the possibility of social media replacing television journalism, as he argued that social media did not have the same levels of credibility and trust.

The comments by the Managing Editor of India Today and Aaj Tak is interesting in wake of many journalists from the media group being openly vocal about their political and ideological leanings on social media, especially Twitter.

The comments also come at a time when journalists like NDTV’s Ravish Kumar and India Today group’s very own Rajdeep Sardesai, while trying to raise the bogey of ‘undeclared emergency’ or while commenting on CBI raids against NDTV promoters, have tried to insinuate that the Narendra Modi government was trying to muzzle voices in media by putting pressure.

Why is Sunil Deodhar, BJP Tripura prabhari asking the CM to clean all septic tanks before moving in?

Sunil Deodhar is widely touted as the architect behind BJP’s win in the recent Tripura elections.  He has been a man on a mission over the past three years since he was made the ‘prabhari’ of Tripura by BJP president Amit Shah in November 2014. Today, Deodhar took to Twitter to give a rather odd advice to the new CM of Tripura.

Deodhar said that the CM Biplab Kumar Deb should get all the septic tanks of all the ministers’ quarters cleaned, before moving in. The suggestion might seem odd, but he backed it up with an astounding claim: He said that this was necessary since, in January 2005, a woman’s skeleton was found in the septic tank of then CM Manik Sarkar’s quarter! He also claimed that the case had been suppressed.

The allegation seems to be true. There are a few media reports from that period, which document this shocking incident. Skeletal remains including the skull and nine bones of the shin, forearms and ribs were found in a tank connected to a toilet close to the house meant for security personnel and other members of the chief minister’s staff, inside the CM’s official residence. The discovery was made when the tank was being cleaned by workers of the Agartala Municipal Council.

The incident had shocked the locals in Tripura and the report suggests that the CM had initially constituted a CID probe, and eventually handed over the case to the CBI. The media report also quotes a source in a lab who said that prima facie the skeleton could of a rape victim.

Later, the local Congress President Samir Ranjan Barman claimed that skeletal remains recovered from the septic tank of the chief minister’s residence was that of Rina Thapa, who was aged between 13 and 17. He claimed that his contention was based on documents he had received from the CID and the forensic laboratory in Chandigarh. Barman added that the Nepali girl’s parents had been forced to leave Tripura following her killing.

He also asserted that the girl had been killed between December 29, 2000, and January 4, 2005, a period when Sarkar was the occupant of the official residence. He claimed that the tank was last cleaned on December 29, 2000, and there was nothing found in it then, hence the crime had occurred post that date. Manik Sarkar had stayed in that residence since 1998.

Author Dinesh Kanji, in his book on Manik Sarkar, claimed that Barman’s claims were taken lightly by the media as they were not convinced of his integrity. It is surprising that such a ghastly news from a ruling CM’s house, never made it to the prime-time debates of Indian television. Nor is this story popular enough in the minds of the Indian electorate. No doubt, if the same story had emerged from the house a BJP CM, it would have been hung around his head for his whole life.

TMC workers beat up, molest Visva Bharti students who were protesting against cutting of trees

TMC workers beat up Visva Bharti students who were protesting against cutting of trees
TMC workers beating up students

TMC workers allegedly beat up students of the famous Visva Bharti university on Friday while they were protesting against a deforestation initiative of the Public Works Department (PWD). These trees were supposedly being cut to aid the widening of a road in Shyambati area of West Bengal’s Bolpur town. This town also houses the university.

The assaulted students include women and two foreign students hailing from Poland and Canada. The Canadian student Lavrenty Repin had to be hospitalised as a result of the attack. The whole assault allegedly took place in front of the cops who failed to intervene in the matter.

Reports claim that after learning about the student protest, TMC’s local leader Nurul Huda Kaji and his associates reached the spot and started indiscriminately thrashing the students, to try and remove them from the spot. It has also been alleged that the TMC workers molested women during their attack.

The videos of the attack which have since then emerged have shown the students and supposed TMC workers having heated exchanges in front of the police. These workers allegedly threatened to extol revenge and later proceeded to beat the students up to try and end the protest.

Soon after the attack, students were rushed to nearby hospitals for treatment, following which, a heavy police force removed the TMC workers and other activists from the spot. The whole protest by the students though turned out to be moot, as the cutting of trees resumed after everyone was disbursed from the spot.

As a result of this attack, a case was filed by the students against three TMC leaders including Kazi Nurul Hoda who is the president of the party’s Ruppur anchal committee.

This incident caught the attention of social media users who reacted with anger and shock:

The police seem to have acted in the matter and as per reports, five supposed TMC workers were arrested on Saturday morning. As per Station House Officer of Santiniketan police station, five people have been arrested in connection with the matter and cases of sexual harassment have been lodged against them.

DNA raises Hindu radicalism bogey over slum dwellers being forcefully converted to Christianity, deletes later

The DNA published a report on the alleged attempt by missionaries to lure slum dwellers into Christianity by offering them a better lifestyle, a better house and education for the children. It was alleged that they even tried to drug them by offering them samosas which made those who ate them feel dizzy. A bystander intervened at this point and later, the Police were informed who said an investigation will be launched into the matter.

In the report by DNA, for some reason unbeknown to any of us, the media outlet thought it was a good idea to add a paragraph on the rise of Hindutva under Yogi Adityanath. In a report on the crime allegedly committed by Christian missionaries, the paragraph made one wonder why was it even added to the report in the first place.

The paragraph, which has been deleted after people raised the issue, read, “Since Yogi Adityanath became Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, radical groups have become emboldened, openly proclaiming its Hindu roots and putting pressure on police. Uttar Pradesh is home to 220 million people of which a fifth are Muslims.”

Interestingly, the portion trying to monkey balance the report about forced conversion to Christianity didn’t stop there. The DNA report had three additional paragraphs talking about Bajarang Dal allegedly preventing a Hindu girl and a Muslim boy from getting married alleging that it was Love Jihad. It also included the statement by UP BJP spokesperson regarding the matter. These portions too have now been deleted from the report.

From the content of the report, one wonders if DNA was insinuating that the slum dwellers were “Hindu radicals”, without a shred of evidence, merely for resisting religious conversion. Or they live in an alternate reality where such attempts at religious conversion are merely the ramblings of the paranoid minds of ‘radicals’.

One also wonders the need to bring up Bajarang Dal, Yogi Adityanath and Love Jihad in a report about missionaries forcefully converting slum dwellers into Christians. The seriousness of the report where the slum dwellers also alleged being drugged by these missionaries seems to have been lost in the cacophony of political correctness.

The DNA has quietly deleted the paragraph without offering an apology.

It is hardly a secret that Christian missionaries have been carrying out religious conversions in the country and altered the demography of the nation in many critical areas. In recent times, several Christian missionaries have been arrested across the country for forcible conversions to Christianity.

SC in a landmark judgement legalises passive euthanasia, Catholic group condemns it

Supreme Court in a landmark judgement legalises passive euthanasia, catholic group condemns it
Supreme Court of India

The Supreme Court in a landmark judgement on Friday legalised passive euthanasia and allowed ‘living will’. Under ‘living will’, a person is allowed to voluntarily refuse medical treatment, even if it means embracing a natural death. Passive euthanasia, on the other hand, is a process where medical treatment is withdrawn from a terminally ill patient to hasten his/her death.

In an event of the patients not being in a condition to specify their wishes, instructions are written as an “advanced medical directive” can be carried out. In this directive, the person in question can detail his/her choice regarding medical treatment in the event when he/she no longer retains the capacity to take a decision.

The instructions in the “advanced medical directive” needs to be voluntarily executed without any coercion after attaining complete knowledge of the situation. The written directive also needs to specifically mention terms and the circumstances under which medical treatment can be withheld or withdrawn. The instructions provided need to be absolutely clear and unambiguous.

The document also needs to mention the name of a close relative or guardian who would take the call if the executioner (the patient in question) is incapable of making the decision. This document needs to be signed by the executioner in presence of witnesses and countersigned by jurisdictional Judicial Magistrate of First Class (JMFC). A copy of the directive needs to be stored in both the digital and paper format, with the JMFC, a registry of the jurisdictional District Court, local government officer and the family physician (if any).

This judgement was delivered by a constitutional bench comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan. The bench unanimously gave the verdict that “right to die with dignity is an intrinsic facet of right to life guaranteed under Article 21”.

This landmark judgement though has angered the Kerala Catholic Bishop’s Council, which proceeded to condemn it. The President of this council Soosai Pakiam called the judgement painful and objectionable. As per the President, god is the only custodian of life. Thus he claimed, humanitarians couldn’t approve the “killing” of a fellow human, even if it involves kindness and pity towards the patient.

In a sharp contrast, Jain monk Tarun Sagar welcomed this judgement and claimed that coincided with the tenets of Jainism. While thanking the Supreme Court for the verdict, the monk talked about how Mahavira taught them to die laughing.

SP MLA accused of kidnapping Dalit woman to ‘celebrate Holi’, Mulayam’s nephew visits him in prison

Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav

This year, our ever vigilant “Indian civil society” has played a leading role in raising awareness about how Holi has become a “festival of fear” for women.

Untitled.png

This is always a good thing. Although I do not know how productive it is for civil society members to approach random men on social media and accuse them of throwing “semen filled balloons.”

Untitled.png

This kind of outrage would perhaps be more productive if the same civil society could use its media empire to direct public outrage against so-called secular leaders of this country who actually commit crimes against women.

Like Samajwadi Party leader Hariom Yadav, an MLA of his party from Sirsaganj and his son Vijay. According to a report in the Times of India:

In an FIR filed by the woman’s uncle, it has been alleged that Hariom, Vijay Pratap and 10 unidentified people took the woman with them in an SUV to celebrate Holi, but she never returned. When her father went to the MLA’s house to find his daughter’s whereabouts, he too didn’t return.

Pachokhara police booked Hariom and Vijay Pratap on Thursday under Sections 342 (wrongful confinement) and 364 (kidnapping or abducting in order to murder) of IPC and sections of the SC/ST Act.

Abducting a Dalit woman in order to “celebrate Holi”? In fact, this particular Samajwadi Leader has been in trouble before. In December 2013, Hariom Yadav was accused of kidnapping and raping a minor girl from Agra. The minor was rescued from his house on Dec 26, 2013, more than after a month after she went missing on Nov 13.

Perhaps this is the kind of secular leader that our civil society should be raising awareness against, instead of throwing out accusations at absolutely random people on Twitter. It is bad enough to have people like this serving as elected MLAs, but what happens when such elements receive tacit support directly from well-known leaders?

According to a report in Amar Ujala:

Untitled.png

Indeed, while in jail, MLA Hariom Yadav received a visit from none other than Akshay Yadav, who is a nephew of Mulayam Singh Yadav himself and a Samajwadi Party MP from Firozabad in Uttar Pradesh.

According to Amar Ujala, Akshay Yadav announced that the party was backing Hariom Yadav to the hilt and that BJP government is engaged in vendetta politics. He also reminded us that the Samajwadi Party supposedly never practices such vendetta politics and possibly also wanted to remind us that “boys will be boys.”

After all, Shri Mulayam Singh Yadav said it himself. I suppose he will now say that boys should be allowed to “celebrate Holi” and if that means kidnapping a Dalit woman, so be it.

UPA govt insider reveals shocking details of how ‘Hindu terror’ bogey was maliciously manufactured

Colonel Purohit was framed

An explosive interview by Times Now has revealed how the then UPA government went to great lengths to create the false narrative of Hindu terror and falsely blame Lt Col Shrikant Purohit for the Malegaon blasts. The interview aired on Friday night with the former undersecretary in the Ministry of External affairs RVS Mani revealed details about how the narrative was created around the Malegaon blasts case, the Samjhauta Express blast case and the Batla House encounter case to paint a picture of saffron terror.

RVS Mani, who served as undersecretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs from February 2006 to August 2010 has revealed several details and stated that Col Purohit was framed by the UPA government because he was breaking the back of the groups involved in Islamic radicalisation.

RVS Mani stated that the Malegaon blast case was registered with the local police. He has raised the following points on how Col Purohit was arrested and tortured and the whole narrative has a number of glaring loopholes.

The points raised by the former undersecretary are:

  1. Col Purohit was deliberately framed by the Congress government
  2. Within barely a month of the Malegaon blast, a serving Army Officers (Col Purohit) was arrested. Also, how did the case get transferred from the local police to the ATS within 4-5 day? The blasts happened at the end of September and Col Purohit was arrested on 4th November.
  3. Col Purohit was deliberately hounded and tortured because he was breaking the back of groups like SIMI. He was exposing the links between the terror groups involved with radicalisation and politicians and powerful individuals.

RVS Mani also raised questions on the manner of Col Purohit’s arrest. Stating that protocols were violated and norms were not followed at that time and it was a pre-planned framing.

RVS Mani also discussed the Samjhauta Blast case. He stated that a Pakistani national named Arf Kasmani from a Karachi based group claimed the responsibility for the blasts. Also, later links to SIMI and other such organisations were exposed. He states in all the years of his service he has never come across a single actionable input regarding Hindu Terror and the term was deliberately coined.

He also went on to discuss the Batla house encounter and stated that it was Digvijay Singh who used to barge into meetings of the Home Ministry and dictate terms on how the investigations should take place.

He added that though the then Home Minister Shivraj Patil was present at the police headquarters on the day of the Batla House encounters and was receiving regular updates. However, he never countered the UPA’a narrative of a ‘fake encounter’. A detailed enquiry by the then Joint Commissioner Amulya Pattnaik was conducted on the encounter, the Home Ministry officials were pressurised by Digvijay Singh to review the inquiry. He added that he and his colleague reviewed the inquiry reports and found no discrepancies but still the Batla House encounter was deliberately called a fake encounter by the UPA. He added that Digvijay Singh used to barge into meetings and made several attempts to dictate the terms of the inquiry.

Times now has raised certain startling points after the interview. They are :

  1. Was the consent of the Central government taken before arresting a serving Army officer like Col Purohit?
  2. Was there a proper court of inquiry or court marshal done by the Army as per norms? If not, why?
  3. Why did the Army reinstate Col Purohit with full honours after he was granted bail? If he was really involved, why would the Army grant him his full honour?
  4. Was Col Purohit targetted because he was exposing the nexus between politicians and terror groups?
  5. Did Col Purohit pay the price for his honesty and service to the nation?
  6. Was the false bogey of Hindu Terror was coined to counter the narrative of Islamic Terror?

The Congress party needs to answer these questions.

Agra residents allege getting drugged by missionaries who were luring them to convert to Christianity

Agra residents allege getting drugged by missionaries who were luring them to convert to Christianity
Women and children Agra

Slum dwellers in Agra have alleged that they were approached by missionaries who tried to lure them to convert to Christianity by offering a house, better lifestyle and education for their children. They also alleged that the said people even tried to drug them by offering a “Samosa”, after eating which they started feeling dizzy. The residents reside at Sector-4 Awas Vikas Colony, in the city’s Jagdish Pura area.

While this episode was playing out, a bystander noticed this exercise and decided to intervene. During the resulting chaos, the “Father” in question quickly changed his clothes to possibly go incognito.

Later the police were called in and as per the SP of Agra City, they have received a complaint and the matter is being probed. While on one hand it is being alleged that the missionaries were carrying out religious conversions, the accused in the matter have claimed that they were carrying out awareness about Women’s day. An official complaint though hasn’t yet been filed.

Even though via many accounts, religious conversions by missionaries has been flourishing since long, the cases as such have started to find popular mention in recent days.

It was reported in December that the Madhya Pradesh police had arrested a Catholic priest and detained 40 others, over accusations of them forcibly converting Hindus to Christianity. The man who made the complaint alleged that he was converted to Christianity by being offered money. It was also alleged that one of the fathers present in the group also asked villagers to take holy dips in the pond and embrace Christianity.

It was also reported how the Mathura police had arrested 7 Christian preachers after they were accused of carrying out forced conversions in a UP village. These preachers were alleged to have distributed Bibles among the citizens and even allegedly started insulting other deities while praying at one of the villager’s house.

An Andhra couple too was arrested for attempting to convert Tribals to Christianity. Back then the police rescued nine kids aged below 14 years of age from the couple, who allegedly were teaching the kids about the Christian faith, under the guise of running an orphanage and old age home.

Divide in Church: Kerala priests vociferously demand removal of cardinal for shady land deals

Protesting Christian protesting

Around 200 priests in Kerala’s Kochi staged a protest outside Cardinal George Alencherry’s house on Friday, to demand his resignation over his alleged involvement in shady land deals. This resignation was demanded by the Ankamaly Archdiocese of the Syro-Malabar Church during the priests’ council.

As per Father Paul Thelakat, the Cardinal has lost the moral dignity to continue as the church’s head. Priests have especially demanded his removal in order to try and save the image of the church.

Another report has claimed that an emergency meeting of the priests was to be held today, following the archdiocese in-charge receiving the official High Court copy directing the police to file a criminal complaint against the Cardinal and three others. Majority of the priests were expected to attend the meeting.

Incidentally, in what might further signify an open divide in the church, it was also claimed that Cardinal’s supporters have threatened the priests who were protesting against him.

The tussle between the Cardinal’s supporters and the priests might be somewhat understandable considering it was just reported yesterday how the Cardinal had found support from four bishops who are part of his Church’s permanent Synod.

This case pertains to the Cardinal been accused of favouring a middleman who sold Church land worth 27 crores for a price of 13 crores. In spite of selling below its market value, the Church had received only 9.3 crores. In his defence, the Cardinal had claimed that the balance had remained unpaid due to demonetisation. In total, reports have speculated that the church has lost about 93 crores.

Earlier while the Kerala High Court was hearing the matter, the Cardinal had decided to brazen things out by claiming that only the Pope could punish him under Canon law. The High Court promptly retorted that the Pope had no jurisdiction in India.

Latest articles

Connect with us

186,504FansLike
194,905FollowersFollow
119,000SubscribersSubscribe
Advertisements